Kevin White, Senior Associate Athletics Director
FINDLAY, Ohio — The Truman Men’s Basketball team opened the 2019-20 campaign against Findlay, who came into the season ranked No. 17 in Division II according to the NABC. Behind Brodric Thomas’ 31 points, the Bulldogs returned the favor after the Oilers beat the Bulldogs in Pershing Arena to open last season; emerging victorious, 67-59.
The first half was all Truman, as they limited Findlay to just 25.9% shooting and just 18 points in the half. However, it was the Oilers who came out hot as they jumped out to a quick 7-2 lead. But Truman fought back with a 10-4 run to take the lead with a layup from Alex McQuinn with 9:22 left in the half. From a 16-16 tie, an 8-0 run for the Bulldogs set the tone for the rest of the half. Both McQuinn and Thomas drained threes in the stretch to go up 24-16 with 4:53 to go. The Bulldogs closed the half on a 7-0 run, culminated by a jumper from Mark Rogers to give them a 13 point edge at the half 31-18.
Hunter Strait opened the second half with a bucket to give Truman their largest lead of the game at 15 points at 33-18. But Findlay showed why they were ranked as they chipped away at the lead before Truman led by just a single point at 47-46. The Bulldogs held onto the lead until there was just 4:53 to go in the half, when the Oilers got their first lead of the half at 56-54. But the Bulldogs didn’t panic, and Thomas would give TSU the lead again at 58-57. It was the first bucket of a 13-2 run that Truman closed the game on and spurred the upset of the Oilers on their home court 67-59.
Thomas came two rebounds short of a double-double with 31 points and eight boards. McQuinn and Strait also scored in double figures with ten points each. Luke TerHark played 35 minutes in his Truman debut, scoring six points and grabbing seven boards with a steal. Both teams shot 25-62 from the field, but the Bulldogs had a definitive edge from the line with 15 points from the stripe to just six for the Oilers.
The Bulldogs will hit the court tomorrow at 4 p.m. ET/3 p.m. CT against Cedarville, looking to avenge the loss that the Yellow Jackets gave them in last year’s GLVC/G-MAC Challenge.